Morrowind talk:Sneak

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I've never successfully picked a pocket without getting caught. I don't understand how it's possible. I have, say, picked a key off of Nerano without incurring a bounty, but he still freaks out and wants to fight me. Are there any tips? Does shoes count? What about other clothing/armor/weapon items? Total encumbrance? Do any of those count? I have a chameleon spell as well, but it doens't help. Does the distance from the victim matter and if so should you be further or closer? Information on pickpocketing should be on the main page. -- --Mebestien 03:24, 8 October 2008 (EDT)

I've found that you need an unusually high Sneak skill (close to maxed) in order to pull off a successful pickpocket without being detected. High Agility and Luck probably help as well. Chameleon helps, but again, it should be a relatively high level to have a noticeable effect. 100% Chameleon should make it a cinch. Invisibility is useless, don't bother. I don't know about shoes or other clothing, but I don't think it matters in Morrowind. (Shoes seem to be an issue in Oblivion, but not Morrowind.) Another thing to be careful of is to make sure you approach your victim directly from the back. Not just kind of from the back, but as perfectly lined up to their rear end as you can get. The margin seems to be very slim for what counts as "behind" the victim. If they're backed up against a wall, you can kind of push them around a bit before you attempt the pickpocket. It helps to use 1st person rather than 3rd person view so you can make sure you're lined up perfectly. Of course, this is just personal experience from memory, I have no idea how much of this is actually true, so testing is obviously needed prior to posting anything in the article. --TheRealLurlock Talk 14:02, 8 October 2008 (EDT)
Indeed, Sneak certainly seems like one of the trickiest skills to use. Thanks for the help, I will take all of that into consideration. I've been playing Morrowind off and on for four years and never quite got the hang of a stealthy character. It just seems like in order to do even the simplest quests for stealthy factions requires an unusually high Sneak, Security, Illusion, Agility, and/or Luck. It's much easier to be stealthy in Oblivion. -- --Mebestien 01:02, 9 October 2008 (EDT)
It's not that the values need to be exceptionally high. It's simply broken. Try the console with exceptionally high values - Sneak, Agility, Luck, Level all set to 200 and you still get caught half the time. It's broken. On the other hand, if you do it the right way you can kill everyone without incurring a bounty. Morrowind's a strange place. --Dab 18:20, 20 October 2008 (EDT)

Pickpocketing uses many checks for a success, so you must certainly be delicate. Having full fatigue is probably the most important factor IIRC. Keep in mind that each time an item is picked up and when it is dropped to your inventory, there is a failure check. The "take all" will do two checks for each item, as it would when you move each individually, this will mess up a new thief. I like to hold the sneak button the entire time I'm in the target's inventory, but I do not know if this matters. Shoe armor-class slightly counts towards stealthiness, but again I don't know details. Lukish_ Tlk Cnt 07:00, 21 October 2008 (EDT)

I just pickpocketed someone standing right in front of them, even without the sneak icon on. Glitch, or unknown mechanics? ~~


I'm noticing a connection between NPC Security skill and their ability to detect thieves. Can anyone confirm? Lukish_ Tlk Cnt 23:15, 29 December 2008 (EST)

When you say "detect thieves", what do you mean? I'm almost certain that it's their Sneak skill that improves their ability to detect you when you are sneaking, but maybe Security helps them detect you when you try to pick their pocket? --Gaebrial 15:12, 5 January 2009 (EST)


Actually invisibility is not useless you can use it to grab expensive items like enchanted stuff and soul gems. It is alot cheaper than say chameleon or sneak Is there anyway to train this skill from useage--— Unsigned comment by Mrp8196 (talkcontribs)

In my experience, you still get caught some of the time when using invisibility. As for training by usage, you gain skill points for every second you avoid notice.--Ratwar 11:24, 6 March 2009 (EST)
Taking anything or attacking anyone automatically defeats Invisibility. Meanwhile, this is only partially true of Sneak and Chameleon, with chances of being detected based on Sneak skill, Luck, Agility, etc.. Downstrike (talk) 06:04, 18 March 2013 (GMT)

Critical Damage[edit]

Would anyone happen to know about how much more damage a critical hit does? I have a feeling it's at least twice as much, but I'm unsure. Also, is there only a chance to get critical hits? Or is it that when I swing and hit while sneaking, but don't get a critical, my swing alerted what I attacked before I hit it? Or perhaps I'm just imagining it and have been missing those times. Who knows? I hope someone does. --Lovless510

Sneak attacking with a melee weapon does 4x damage. Sneak attacking with a ranged weapon does 1.5x damage. If you are undetected by your target at the point at which you hit them, you should always get a critical hit - the only 'chance' is the normal chance to actually hit your target. It is possible to miss and still get the 'critical hit' message, but this is due to a bug in the game engine. --Gaebrial 03:09, 30 March 2009 (EDT)
Hey, thanks for answering my question so fast. That was very nice and helpful. --Lovless510

Sneak is helpful, critical damage is as well. Where does the crit hit icon show up on the screen? — Unsigned comment by (talk) at 03:28 on 4 March 2012

East Empire[edit]

IT says here that the EEC in Bloodmoon uses sneak as a favored skill but on the Bloodmoon EEC page its doesnt show sneak. Does it? — Unsigned comment by (talk) on 15 July 2010

Thanks for pointing that out. This page was wrong - Sneak isn't a favoured skill for the EEC. rpeh •TCE 10:19, 15 July 2010 (UTC)

Locations for Sneaking[edit]

So what locations would be recommend for training up Sneak, by leaving your character somewhere? Where are there buildings with NPCs that actually wander around, that you can use to rapidly gain levels in Sneak?

Questionable Accuracy and out-and-out lies.[edit]

So, I use sneak with chameleon a lot. I have found sneak to be the *WORST* implemented skill in the game. Often times it wont count me as sneaking even though I am and no one could see me. Other times it does. Lots of times the icon for successful sneaking will *appear*, but then taking anything immediately results in being caught/attacked. I have never played a stealth character without 80+ chameleon, because of this very reason: Sneak Does Not Work. 04:55, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

Silly you, taking stuff makes you more noticable, that's why they see you while you're sneaking! --Bonabopn 20:53, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

The Notes[edit]

Is it really necessary to say "Use a hammer, or etc." to stay in Stealth mode? I propose we just tell the readers to double-click in order to stay in Stealth Mode. Any objections? Shianni 21:42, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Read the paragraph again. It does say to double-click, but that will not work on PC --Brf 01:58, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

OHHH!!! I have an Xbox. Sorry. Shianni 19:02, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Vampire Buff Glitch[edit]

I have a question. I got my sneak skill to 100 by training, and later became a vampire, which buffed it some. When got the cure, my sneak skill was still bright yellow, as if it was buffed. Since then it has gained seven levels, and is now 107. I do not have any fortify skill effects active (Or at least not sneak!) Why is this? --Bonabopn 20:53, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

Alternate Training for Sneak and Free Criticals[edit]

For reference, I use version 1.6.1820, I think this is the latest patch with Tribunal and Bloodmoon installed with no unofficial patches. I'm not sure if these are known, but I haven't seen them anywhere.

In my years of Morrowind, I have messed with sneak quite a bit, but after 6 or 7 years of off and on playing, I just recently discovered something. I was sneaking through the Ashlands past some cliff racers (Sneak ~30), as I tend to whenever I'm low level. My intention was to attract them one by one and shoot them with my bow. When I shot one of the cliff racers (my marksman was sort of bad) it started to approach and it came up close to me, while I was still sneaking. The yellow sneak button was still on, but I thought nothing of it. I repeated the process with a second racer and my sneak skill leveled up. I then checked the progress of my sneak skill before attempting on a third one. I shot it once, and then waited in sneak position, when it had gotten right in my face, I checked and my sneak had jumped about 30 points or so. I forget if I have tried this with magic but it might work for that too, I simply can't recall. For the record, this only works with cliff racers to any effect, and only when they're alone, no other monsters close enough to see you and nowhere near town. I think they have a short vision range or something so whatever the effect of proximity on leveling the sneak skill is, it gets amplified. I guess those cliff racers had to be there for something.

The second one I've known about for quite some time. I discovered this while doing the Trerayna Dalen bounty quest. I was sneaking in the distance and used a low damage frost spell with a radius of 50 feet to hit all of them. I then ran up to start whacking away with my sword and every initial hit was a critical hit, whether it hit or miss. I just tested it again with a fireball spell in Caldera and critted all of the imperial guards plus Nedhelas with my first shot on them. Using magic from the distance while sneaking enables you to get a free critical hit when you close the distance and use your weapon. Lazy Waysef 22:57, 2 December 2011 (UTC)

Initial strikes after casting offensive spells from stealth are always critical as if the spell had crit, although the spell does no extra damage. I have never heard of the weird Cliff Racer glitch, but I will hunt more just to try and reproduce it. Perhaps your sneakiness was better due to a chameleon effect, or were you clipping into the ground or a wall or something? You can sneak attack all day when you're that stealthy. There is no bearing on skill gains from attacking or proximity though, you just need to be within the range of the NPC/creature's detection range. Lukish_ Tlk Cnt 02:12, 3 December 2011 (UTC)
I tested it just now again. This time, I'm level 8 with a sneak of 46 again on a female bosmer. To make certain, I did not use any chameleon effects and sat in the middle of the path on the road between Ghostgate and Ald'ruhn, and when the cliff racers close in to attacking range I get an instantaneous boost to my sneak skill. I killed three and went from Sneak level 46, 89/100 to Sneak 47 51/100. Another important note is that I never break sneak (sometimes it takes a little while for the racers to wander over). If you stop sneaking for even a split second between the first hit on the cliff racer and when they get to attacking range, it does not seem to work. Lazy Waysef 08:11, 4 December 2011 (UTC)

Is Sneak Working, or Not?[edit]

Many times when I try to engage Sneak mode, there is a delay before the Sneak icon shows; some times it never seems to show. Of course, this only happens when I want to steal something.

That's happening now, so I thought I would test it, but it turns out that the pile of crates and barrels next me has no ownership assigned, so the NPCs shouldn't react any way. (BTW, my Sneak skill is currently maxed and my Luck and Agility are spell- and potion-enhanced beyond normal max.)

Can anyone explain why the Sneak icon won't show, and whether Sneak mode is engaged after I've held down the Ctrl key for several minutes, (real-time)? Downstrike (talk) 06:22, 18 March 2013 (GMT)

Tip in notes section makes no sense[edit]

Can someone rewrite this to parse as actually meaningful?

  • If you have a low Sneak ability and you want to raise it, you can search for a shop or another building with only one NPC. A prime example of this is Sellus Gravius in the Census and Excise Office. Find a position while you are in sneak mode, sometimes the NPC will look over their shoulder if you sneak behind them. Approach the NPC and wait for them to face you. The NPC will rotate to face you for a few seconds as you move around them. Rotate them away from your sneak position.

What does "find a position" mean here? "Approach the NPC" in sneak mode, or approach and get them to face you, then sneak? What on earth does "Rotate them away from your sneak position" mean? Is this a console Rotate z cheat? Also needs general copyediting for run-on sentence, and awkward phrasing like "prime example" and "search for", etc., but there's no point polishing a turd. The actual meaning of this needs to be clarified first. — Darklocq  ¢ 18:07, 12 June 2017 (UTC)

Probability bug?[edit]

no se si alguien va a leer esto por estar en español, pero ya que...

bueno lo que les quiero comentar es que la habilidad "Sneak" si esta bugeado, el algoritmo que calcula la probabilidad del jugador de ser detectado, y la probabilidad del objetivo de detectar el jugador, no toma en cuenta una de las habilidades que determinan la probabilidad de éxito (agilidad, suerte, sneak, fatiga, distancia del objetivo, y se supone que el nivel de ceguera del objetivo que casi siempre es 0), el bug provoca que una de estas habilidades siempre sea 0 (no se que habilidad sea), lo que a su vez provoca que el algoritmo genere una probabilidad de éxito de no mas del 5% aun con las habilidades al máximo.

no tengo forma de asegurarlo, pero yo sospecho que la habilidad bugeada es la suerte.

eso es todo — Unsigned comment by (talk) at 12:22 on 4 August 2017‎

In English (manually tweaked machine translation, with punctuation corrections. etc., so it parses properly; I have some Spanish but am not really fluent, so this may not be perfect):

I do not know if anyone is going to read this because it's in Spanish, but anyway ...

Well, what I want to comment on is that the "Sneak" ability is bugged. The algorithm that calculates the probability of the player being detected (the probability of the target to detect the player) does not take into account one of the Attributes [or Skills or other factors] that determine the chance of success (Agility, Luck, Sneak, Fatigue, target distance, and supposed target blindness [or Chameleon-fooled] amount) is almost always 0. The bug causes one of these abilities [etc.] to always be 0. I do not know what skill [or other factor] it is. This in turn causes the algorithm to generates a probability of success of not more than 5% even with the abilities [etc.] to the maximum.

I have no way of being certain about it, but I suspect that the bugged ability is Luck.

That is all.

It's long been known that the ability to Sneak in Morrowind is basically a wreck, but I can't confirm the above suspicion's details. Having a fairly high Sneak, and a fairly strong Chameleon effect, and being perfectly behind the victim or would-be observer is generally enough to get the job done. Having either superhuman Sneak or Chameleon is also often enough by itself, and if you have both, you can usually steal directly in front of multiple observers. I just did this in the Telvanni Vault the other day, with Fortify Sneak +100, Chameleon well over 100, and a non-trivial Fortify Luck CE item, relevant stats "natively" in the 60s or higher, and I was able to rob the entire room in front of two guards. The issue with Sneak is that it's so nearly impossible to succeed at low levels that it makes plausibly playing a thief pretty much impossible. You just hardly ever succeed without using boatloads of magic until you are very high level with the relevant stats quite high, so unless you use the save-reload-save-reload cheat constantly, your only option is to be a thief/mage combo with high Illusion (Chameleon) and Alteration (Telekinesis) skills. — Darklocq  ¢ 17:28, 13 August 2017 (UTC)